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Hetch Hetchy 110 mile loop hike

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Hetch Hetchy 110 mile loop hike

Postby Bearlover » Sat Oct 29, 2005 1:13 pm

Work exploded this summer, it is a bummer being a plumber(pun intended) sometimes. But I basically demanded and got a 10 day reprieve at the end of August. Hiked in from Hetch Hetchy and made 15 miles to Paradise meadow the first day. The meadows I passes were as green as spring still! Falls creek was flowing well and brimming with fish... none of which took my lure :angry:
The second day I climbed out of Jack Main Canyon and into Tilden Canyon. The memory of the lost hiker Micheal Ficery wasimpossible to ignore. It was in this canyon that he went missing and I kept thinking I would find some evidence as to his disapearance. (I know hundreds of people already searched) So I left the trail and followed the route I had mistakenly taken the previous may in the snow.. alas nothing.
I climbed up Macomb ridge and dropped into Stubblefield canyon.. spirits improved. Stubblefields creek was also flowing about two feet deep and everything was green and vibrant. In the air hung the musky smell of bear. though I could not find any about.. just a lot of tracks.
I climbed out and dropped into Kerrick canyon and pitched camp near the Bear valley trail junction. Kerrick canyon was rich with plant life and it smelled glorious. The creek was running and tiny trout darted out from under rocks as I bathed my feet(also glorious!)
The third day I followed Kerrick up to Seavey pass and dropped down to Benson lake. Benson and it's beach sparkled in the sun and for once there was no wind. The fourth day I basically vegetated by the lake and got the obligatory High Sierra sunburn and loved it. Day five found me climbing to Smedberg lake. Everyone I had passed warned me that this climb was a bad one.. yet I found it to be enjoyable. Views were much better than at Seavey pass and that bear smell was thick in the air... perfect.
Smedberg lake had a rather loud horse packer group camped near the outlet so I camped way back on the cliff next to Sister lake. Sister lake is absolutely mind blowing. It appears fishless and definitley not often visited judging by the undisturbed shorline and delicate colonies of grasses growing along it. It feels and looks as though it just emerged from the ice age.. and even better, I could not hear the horse party hooping and hollering from there.(Not complaining.. I expected that at Smedberg)
The next day I summited Volunteer peak where I had a 360 degree view of the Sierra crest. Read the trail register and then just sat for the rest of the day in stunned amazement at it all. I descended to Rodgers lake for the night. Rodgers is such a beautiful lake. The grantie around it looks like oatmeal and raisin cookie dough!
Late that evening as I was casting a bat took my lure out of midair! After about a minute of me wondering what to do with this bat flitting about on my line it finally tired and landed on the rock. I carefully pinned it with my fleece and managed to unhook the poor sucker. That was the only thing I caught with my fishing pole the whole trip! Oh well, I would rather hike than fish anyways! After a layover day I hiked down Rodgers canyon at dawn and watched the frost retreat from the sun as it cleared the canyon. Made Pleasant valley by noon and camped up on Rancheria Mountain. Strangley there was a trout in one of the springs.. near as I can tell it must have come up from Hetch Hetchy.. like that is a tough trout. I could have scooped it out with my hands cause it had nowhere to go.. but decided the Karma god would get me if I did and let it be. The trail down to Rancheria falls is overgrown with manzanita 5 feet high but still somewhat recognizable. Rancheria Falls was running well and I made my last camp in the burned out area above them. Made my way back along the resevoir and at last to my crusty old jeep.. key was still in the ignition!! Hikers are such honest folk! No bears and no trout, yet an absolutley flawless trip...
There is a Bear.. Where? Over there!



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oops

Postby Bearlover » Sat Oct 29, 2005 1:26 pm

I guess this belongs in reports from the backcountry.. sorry. I am just excited we are back up and running! Thanks Eric.
There is a Bear.. Where? Over there!
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Postby ERIC » Sat Oct 29, 2005 1:34 pm

Nope! I think that forum was kinda redundant. A couple others were as well, so I just combined things a bit. You all should probably re-read the descriptions for each. Let me know if you have any suggestions (in the Comments & Suggestions forum, of course!) ;)
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Postby ndwoods » Thu Nov 03, 2005 9:52 am

You hooked a bat? Good golly, that's got to be a first! :eek:
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Bat Fishing

Postby Bearlover » Fri Nov 04, 2005 7:00 pm

Do you really think it is a first.. I wondered if it had happened to anyone else! A rather dubious honor for me cause I dig bats.. since they eat my dreaded foe the mosquito. I really wish someone had been there with me.. for one thing after it was over I laughed like a madman for twenty minutes :lol: I love the way the wilderness has of humbling me when I least expect it! Just when I think I am am super Joe Hiker.. a huge flash flood wipes out my tent.. with me in it.. as if to say "I would'nt camp THERE if I were you little man."
Actually I hate to admit this but it is funny.. I once hooked myself in the cheek with a three pronged super dooper lure! Luckily my uncle was at hand with some needle nose pliers. He was just about to give up and have me hike out with that lure in my face when he managed to get it out.. Can you imagine my shame hiking with a lure in my face! You just know I would pass every cute lady hiker in Yosemite on the way out! Then again nowadays nobody would bat an eyelash over a piercing like that!
I am beginning to think I should just stick to hiking and leave the fishing pole home.. Dang why does fresh caught trout have to taste so good miles into the backcountry!!!
There is a Bear.. Where? Over there!
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Postby markskor » Fri Nov 04, 2005 10:18 pm

Bear,
Never hooked a bat, but did hook a large gull once - same way - it swooped down and took a gold Panther Martin from right below the surface - maybe 30 yards out. It struck quickly and took off - faster than I could even think about setting the hook correctly. I had 4-pound line on, and played him like a sky trout. For about 10 minutes, I reeled in, only to have it take the line back out later - all in the sky above Upper Cathedral Lake. Finally it gave in, fell into the water and I brought him in. I dragged it over to the cove on the surface, madder than anything, and removed the hook from its lip. After it was over it just hopped around a bit making some weird screeching noises, jumped over onto a large rock, and glared at me for a good 1/2 hour.
I never did check the regs on how many gulls makes up the limit.
Mark
Mountainman who swims with trout
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Right on.. I don't feel like a lame fisherman .. as much.

Postby Bearlover » Fri Nov 04, 2005 11:28 pm

I think 10 is the limit on gulls.. OK Sierra club types I am kidding!
I was using a mosquito dry fly I had bought from the groveland quick stop..(not really a quick stop whatever that last chance store is on the way out of Groveland.. I try to spend my cash locally to help out) I guess I did not read the package very well.. It was too real. Man I bet that gull fought hard! I bet you felt like I did.. like what do I do now? I am sorry for anyone in earshot of Rodgers lake in late august.. it must have sounded like a madman was on a rampage.. I usually don't make a sound on solo treks but this time I was a whooping and hollering like a fool! I bet you were as astonished as I was.. you with a seagull on your line!! I only had a tiny bat to contend with.. though I will say for a bat it did fight every bit as hard as a small trout.. though airbourne at that! :retard:
There is a Bear.. Where? Over there!
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Postby Snow Nymph » Tue Nov 08, 2005 11:55 pm

Sounds like a great trip! SnowDude and I were just talking about hiking Hetch Hetchy some time. We haven't hiked much in Yosemite.
Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free . . . . Jim Morrison


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